1) I know 40 is the highest score but this is the only book I've read out of all the years reading for the Rainbow Awards that I thought was perfect. Well written, entertaining, thought provoking, challenging....the whole thing was just really well done.
2) This story has a complex realistic plot with a good balance of challenges for each of the two characters. It also offers a vivid hot, humid Florida setting though I would have liked more of a sense of which city/town was featured and a sense of its location and size. I liked the three-dimensional characters, especially Dunkin's Jewish background, his complicated mental issues, and his conflicted urges to ingratiate himself with the popular crowd versus being an outcast with Lily. This absorbing story is told in a smooth, professional writing style with deft handling of a tricky narrative centering on alternating first-person viewpoints.
3) Funny and insightful, peopled with two very engaging main characters, reading this well-written novel was a delight.
Lily and Dunkin by Donna Gephart
Transgender Young Adult
Age Range: 10 and up
Grade Level: 5 and up
Lexile Measure: 0680
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (May 3, 2016)
Amazon: Lily and Dunkin
Amazon Kindle: Lily and Dunkin
For readers who enjoyed Wonder and Counting by 7's, award-winning author Donna Gephart crafts a compelling dual narrative about two remarkable young people: Lily, a transgender girl, and Dunkin, a boy dealing with bipolar disorder. Their powerful story will shred your heart, then stitch it back together with kindness, humor, bravery, and love.
Lily Jo McGrother, born Timothy McGrother, is a girl. But being a girl is not so easy when you look like a boy. Especially when you’re in the eighth grade.
Dunkin Dorfman, birth name Norbert Dorfman, is dealing with bipolar disorder and has just moved from the New Jersey town he’s called home for the past thirteen years. This would be hard enough, but the fact that he is also hiding from a painful secret makes it even worse.
One summer morning, Lily Jo McGrother meets Dunkin Dorfman, and their lives forever change.
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